Which WordPress Ecommerce Plugin is Better for Your Online Store?
The number of eCommerce plugins for WordPress has increased over the last couple of years. With so many options, it sure gets a bit confusing to choose the best. Selecting an eCommerce plugin depends on whether it fits the unique requirements of every online store owner.
7 Best WordPress Ecommerce Plugins
The eCommerce industry is booming at an exponential rate and WordPress is the go-to option for most store owners. According to the data from Builtwith, more than 27% of all online stores run on WooCommerce (an eCommerce plugin for WordPress).
Finding the right eCommerce plugin demands extensive testing. Online store owners need to consider a lot of other aspects as well as user experience, load time, payment features, and more.
If you have already found the right plugin, you have won half the battle. However, if you are still searching for the right one, here are 7 best WordPress eCommerce plugins that you should check out immediately.
WooCommerce is the biggest name in eCommerce plugins. It powers over 3,317,205 live websites across the globe. It is the most popular plugin on the web with a massive 68% usage distribution and there are few limitations on what you can sell with their platform.
It takes care of your payment issues and allows several payment mechanisms to be set up. Businesses can set-up customized and specific distribution logistics as well as shipping rates.
Moreover, WooCommerce offers a huge library of resources – 1200+ themes, 950+ plugins for WordPress, and hundreds of other seller extensions.
With WooCommerce, businesses gain better control of managing their store’s inventory. There’s a plugin or an extension for everything.
Update products, add new prices, list discounts, coupons, and other marketing collaterals with ease. Furthermore, it offers full-fledged access to a Dashboard for managing every aspect of an eCommerce business.
Another great aspect of WooCommerce is that it makes it easy for business owners to configure tax settings with local tax rates and advanced tax classes. Plus, it offers multiple reports to help understand the transactions. You will also gain access to a complete array of marketing tools using additional Woo extensions.
The plugin comes with 5 pre-installed payment gateways that allow businesses to accept bank transfers, COD, debit and credit cards along with PayPal and checks. If you have a small store, you don’t even need to add more payment options. For medium to large online stores, They offer a handful of free and paid extensions to seamlessly integrate additional payment options like Stripe, Braintree, Authorize.Net, Amazon Payments, and FirstData.
Aside from these advantages, this plugin also provides a lot to your users. Thanks to paid and free extensions, buyers can create accounts on your website, add items to cart or wish-lists, schedule appointments, join loyalty schemes, and enjoy many other features. Additionally, WooCommerce is mobile responsive, offering a seamless user experience across devices and browsers.
WooCommerce is a perfect fit for businesses of every size. You don’t need to be a developer or a computer whizz to use this either as most of the module is drag and drop. With an endless list of options, They top our list of the best eCommerce plugins for 2020.
Pricing: The plugin is free, however, themes and extensions range between $25 to $250
Shopify WordPress Plugin
The Shopify WordPress plugin makes it easier to add an online store to your existing website. Shopify, in itself, is a leader in the eCommerce industry and boasts some heavy-duty features such as the ability to sell across platforms.
This plugin can support both small and large online stores. It is extremely flexible and is a great choice for someone who is just getting started thanks to the inclusion of a helpful ability to create a mini storefront easily. One of the best things about it is that it makes it really easy to set-up a store and go live. All you need to do is copy and paste the generated embed codes of products on your site.
Every aspect of your site is customizable when you use Shopify. It allows businesses to integrate over 70 payment gateways seamlessly.
You can set flexible shipping rates defined by weight, quantity, and delivery location. Besides, it has a minimal interface that allows vendors to make changes from a single place.
It also offers customized currency and language options for checkout. Furthermore, to make things easier for sellers, the plugin also ensures automatic calculation of taxes (country & state) based on the currency selected by the user.
It's easier to get going with Shopify than installing native WordPress eCommerce plugins. All you need to do is register with an account to get your eCommerce shop up and running. Since it is a cloud-hosted system, as the eCommerce business grows, you do not have to think about updating your server because of network outages. Plus, you do not have to bother with site security, speed, or other technical aspects as they are PCI compliant and offers in-built SSL certificates.
If you are looking for a solution to get the best out of two things – WordPress and Shopify, this is the right plugin. Other than wholesome features, They also offer a lot of themes to help you update the look and feel of your online store as and when needed. You can either choose the limited free version of the WP Shopify plugin or purchase the Pro Version, whichever suits you better.
Pricing: The plugin is free, but businesses need to subscribe to a monthly plan starting as low as $9 per month to $2000 per month (negotiable)
BigCommerce WordPress Plugin
BigCommerce is a paid eCommerce service that enables business owners to set up an online store and sell their products online and their plugin helps businesses to manage all of the store's complex eCommerce platforms and technology. It makes it easier to get the best of both platforms, quite similar to Shopify, but with a price tag.
It is easy to customize as you can find pre-built extensions for most of your business needs. You can make as many changes on the visual frontend without messing up the eCommerce attributes using the BigCommerce WordPress plugin.
If you are familiar with coding, there is no limitation to what you can achieve with the extensions. Since it is an open-source platform, you can modify the elements to your liking. You don't have to be a tech wizard to get the hang of admin panels thanks to its straightforward design and approach.
BigCommerce lets you increase traffic to your site by using RSS links and purchasing feeds. This plugin also conveniently links to shopping feeds such as Shopzilla to bring more traffic to your website.
One of the standout features of the platform is that it allows businesses to manage multiple WordPress sites through a single control panel. You can manage everything from a single screen, be it catalogs, shipping details, and coupons. It enables you to create comprehensive catalogs, manage large-volume orders, and handle up to 600 SKUs per item. With over 250 choices, you will be able to create a fully customized catalog of items.
BigCommerce allows you to integrate your shop into platforms like Amazon, Google, eBay and so on. It also features SEO tools for a better listing of your online store. The platform itself is extremely performance-optimized and helps businesses get more visibility on SERP results. Moreover, it is mobile-responsive and cross-browser compatible.
In addition, it also supports all essential payment gateways like Authorize.net, PayPal, Google Checkout, eWay, Payleap, 2Checkout, and more. Apart from these features, it provides the flexibility to accept payments from other sources, making it easy for all involved parties to transact. Every transaction is handled on their servers, so your WordPress site loads faster. To sum it up, if you want to take the stress out of backend management of your store, BigCommerce might just be the right fit.
Pricing: Monthly subscription starts as low as $29.95 and goes up to $249.95 per month
This is one of the newest additions to the WP Plugin library. Cart66 Cloud is similar to other WordPress eCommerce Plugins like Shopify and BigCommerce because you also get a package of hosting services in addition to obtaining a plugin.
This plugin lets you sell anything and everything on your WordPress-based website. You can sell physical products, digital products, subscriptions, tickets, premium content, and more, using one single plugin. It gives you the ease of maintaining and updating your inventory with just a few clicks.
All of the services are PCI compliant, hence every transaction is routed to a secure hosted payment page. For additional security, it also uses a business class SMTP verified server to improve the reliability and speed of every outgoing email. You can set up one or more email addresses to get notified when customers place an order.
Cart66 Cloud features an extensive dashboard with easy to access options. One of the amazing features of this particular plugin is the Live Shopping Cart. Store owners can see which customers are on the site and what they are adding to their carts in real-time. It is a great way to understand the buyer journey and accordingly adjust the pages for a better user experience.
Beyond these capabilities, the plugin is optimized for speed and performance. As Cart66 is cloud-hosted, the checkout process is extremely fast and secure. Another bonus is that the transactions do not slow down your website as it happens outside of your WordPress site’s hosting servers.
In addition to these enticing features, They seamlessly integrate third-party applications such as Zendesk, Amazon S3, MailChimp, Gravity Forms, and a lot more extensions.They also have a built-in feature whereby store owners can set up personalized reminders to remind customers of a pending renewal or upgrade.
Store owners can create Buy Now links that can connect one (or more) items to your customers' shopping carts when tapped and position it directly on the checkout page ready to pay for the order. Cart66 Cloud allows you to use these links in email newsletters, Facebook, Twitter, and other online platforms.
Pricing: Yearly subscription of $95.00
Jigoshop is a free eCommerce plugin made for WordPress. It has been recently updated to a newer version to provide ultra-fast load times for every eCommerce website. The newer version of this plugin features a core-integrated RESTful API that makes it easy to seamlessly integrate with most third-party applications.
It is trusted by thousands of merchants across the world and provides you everything you need to set up an eCommerce store in a jiffy. If you are looking for an easy and highly advanced eCommerce solution for your online WordPress store, then you should definitely explore Jigoshop.
Not only is Jigoshop free, but it also has some of the best features and extensions that make it so powerful. With a minimalist codebase, every aspiring entrepreneur can easily drag and drop products on to their sites with ease.
You gain access to a lot of payment options, an intuitive admin panel, an array of shipping tools, and full-fledged order and inventory management.
The admin dashboard is attractively set out in a style that closely resembles the admin panel of WordPress. While the majority of the features are free to use, some extensions and themes are priced at moderately higher rates.
To be honest, Jigoshop offers a lot of customization options for your online storefront. From customized product displays to flexible tax rates per state, you get a lot of features to make every transaction safe and secure. Adding new products is easy (and quite similar to the new post feature of WordPress). However, the only drawback is that you can only display one product image at a time instead of being able to showcase a gallery.
A lot of additional widgets are also available for use, such as a price filter and a best-seller feature, so you can tailor the shopping experience even more. The customer interface is minimal and allows easier navigation wherein buyers can sort products as they need. You will need to add the Jigoshop Shopping Extension for this added-value feature.
It is good for every business type, but Jigoshop does have a scope for improvement on the frontend design, the tax slabs, and the shipping settings.
Pricing: Not provided by the developer
Easy Digital Downloads
If you want to sell digital products online, Easy Digital Downloads is hands-down the best option. Other plugins such as WooCommerce and Cart66 also allow you to sell digital products, but they come with a lot of other options that tend to slow down the website at times. On the other hand, it is an extremely lightweight plugin that gives you access to the required features without any hassles.
You get the option of secure payment processing with this plugin. It allows you to integrate payment gateways such as Stripe, PayPal, Bitpay, and more. One of the major downsides of this plugin is that there are not many third-party extensions to integrate. The default library gives users access to some high-grade extensions and add-ons, most of which are paid.
Similar to competitors like WooCommerce, Easy Digital also gives businesses the option to customize user experiences.
From creating an account to checking out, customers can easily perform actions as and when they want. You will also be able to connect various marketing tools like AWeber and MailChimp easily.
A straightforward vendor dashboard gives you access to all important features in a click. It offers one of the most-impressive customer management interfaces within the eCommerce industry. You will get full access to view and edit customer information as you deem fit.
The plugin constantly monitors sales and downloads, then presents everything with advanced reporting tools. Other than the quick view on the dashboard, it also provides detailed reports on taxes, sales, and renewals which you can export as an Excel file.
Unfortunately, Easy Digital downloads do not offer in-built shipping and tax calculators or variable product options. However, you can download the Simple Shipping Extension to set customized shipping rates. There is also an extension Variable Pricing Switcher that allows buyers to switch between listed prices of products. Like WooCommerce, this plugin does not integrate with any other CMS besides WordPress.
If you are running a small store and are only dealing with digital downloads, you will definitely love this plugin. It is minimal yet powerful but is not of much help when you want to sell anything other than digital products.
Pricing: Yearly subscription ranges between $99 to $499 depending on the plan selected
What to Look for in a WordPress eCommerce Plugin?
Every eCommerce store has its own set of requirements, and not every plugin meets the needs. Extensions and third-party integrations do make it easier, but there are certain core necessities that online store owners need to consider before installing a WordPress eCommerce plugin.
Of course, price is a primary factor, but there are other things like compatibility and ease of use that also play a major role in boosting your site’s traffic and sales.
Irrespective of custom needs, here are a dozen aspects that you need to double-check before you download a plugin:
- It is PCI compliant for secure transactions
- Loads fast and is compatible across devices
- Integrated payment solutions
- Design and customization features
- Integration with third-party extensions
- Customer support
- Free and paid themes, extensions, and widgets
- Resource library (help guides, FAQs)
- Customizable tax and shipping rates
- Option to add product variants
- Easy management of inventory and marketing collaterals
- Intuitive dashboard and reporting
Out of all the plugins that we tested, we believe WooCommerce is the best WordPress eCommerce Plugin for selling physical and digital goods. If you are just looking to sell digital products, we recommend choosing Easy Digital Downloads.
With that said, you must play around with the plugins to better understand which best fits your business requirements. You should not consider one plugin over the other simply because of the price tag. Free and freemium plugins might serve you over the short run but are not as scalable as their paid competitors.
Most importantly, take your time to try out the demos of each plugin before you finalize your decision.
Ultimately, it is absolutely vital to take a comprehensive approach to review each option and differentiating the mandatory features to formulate an informed decision for your eCommerce property.